The Roads of Go Home Lake is the sequel to Day of the Dog-Tooth Violets, an award-winning novel by Christina Kilbourne. In this book, the author shares with us the life of Winnie St. Pierre, alternating between the past and present.
The beginning finds Winnie making a new start in life with her children, their father recently deceased. Having very little education and confidence, she sets out to learn to read, learn to drive and find a job. Along the way she makes a startling discovery which leads her to write her life story.
Within the life story we learn about Winnie's childhood which was far from easy. Growing up with an alcoholic father was always hard to handle, but, when in the middle of the night, he comes home and the entire family is whisked off to an abandoned town where they will set up a new completely isolated life, she sees a new side to him. Maybe life won't be so bad after all....
I found this book really easy to read and impossible to put down. I loved the main character and her inner strength. In the circumstances facing her, many would have made different choices but remarkably, Winnie always finds the courage to make the tougher choices in life and take a step towards finding answers she longs for and the healing she needs.
The author holds nothing back as we see the characters dealing with love, loss, regret, domestic abuse and a host of obstacles. What could sound like a tragically depressing novel is actually far from it, thanks to the author's gift for balance. It was a great read and I will definitely be exploring more by this author.
As a side note: A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book will go to supporting victims of family violence and promoting literacy in First Nations communities across Canada.
Author's website: http://www.christinakilbourne.com/